The Ghana Mine Workers Union has petitioned Parliament to intervene and stop Goldfields Ghana Limited from sacking about 1,500 of its members.
The retrenchment is expected to affect most of its miners at the Tarkwa mine.
Confirming the exercise in a recent interview, Goldfields Ghana’s Vice president and Head of Corporate Affairs David Johnson explained that the move is part of measures to change its business model and make the company profitable due to the relatively short lifespan of the mine.
This is the second time in three years that the mining firm has embarked on such a massive retrenchment exercise. In 2014, it laid off about 400 of its workforce over similar concerns.
According to him, the company’s mining fleet has changed and “will need to be replaced now looking at the types of mines that we have which is five to six years of active mining, if we were to pump that money into fleet replacement we will not actually be able to recruit that money back because we are talking of a huge capital investment here.”
Presenting the petition to the leadership of parliament, the Union accused Goldfields Ghana of intimidating its members thus the need for the lawmaking chamber to call it to order.
“They cannot go that route,” the Union’s General Secretary William Ankrah told both the Majority and Minority leaders who received the petition on behalf of the speaker.
On its part, the leadership of parliament pledged to get to the bottom of their concerns as the representative of the people.
“We will study it and whatever needs to be done will be done,” the Majority leader Osei Kyei Mensah-Bonsu assured the Union.